How to deal with soot from cut leather edges?

I have been experimenting with leather some more lately, and I’ve noticed that it’s fairly easy to wind up spreading the soot from the cuts onto the material face if you’re not careful. Anyone have any tips or advice about how to handle the piece after cutting to avoid that? I considered light soap and water before unmasking but figured I’d ask for advice before I go down any paths since my leather supply is limited and I’d like to avoid waste as much as I can.



Haven’t tried it with leather, but I find that a light wipe with a Q-tip moistened with a vinegar and water mixture removes that smut extremely well. :slightly_smiling_face:

You’d have to be really careful with leather to not get the Q-tip over wet. It might stain or bleed.


Odd, I haven’t run in to that problem … and I’m primarily cutting leather. Your first instinct is good: use a sponge with light soap and water along the edge, and that should deal with most of the charring. That same method should work to remove any charring on the surface, too.

Can you share a picture of what you’re talking about? Not a big deal, I’m just a tad curious since I haven’t really experienced this yet.


The thing I ran into was specifically around some internal cut-outs and char getting dragged onto the face of the piece when I was applying some dye.

Will try to remember to post a picture later.


Could you just use some gorilla tape on the edge of the leather, basically clinging to all of the char?

I learned the smut is also small flakes of soot or dirt…


1.a small flake of soot or other dirt:
“all those black smuts from the engine”

2.a fungal disease of grains in which parts of the ear change to black powder.

3.obscene or lascivious talk, writing, or pictures:

“porn, in this view, is far from being harmless smut”

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